NES Advantage

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The NES Advantage.

The NES Advantage is an arcade joystick style controller for the NES. It was created by Nintendo and released in 1987 along side the NES Max. It uses a traditional joystick instead of a D-pad, has turbo buttons with adjustable rates, a slow button, and the ability to switch between either player's controller port.

My brother got a NES Advantage as a gift in the late 1980s. While I thought the controller was really cool looking, I didn't actually enjoy using it, and preferred a standard NES controller.

Review

Good

  • It looks pretty cool, has nice packaging, and is solidly built.
  • The slow button, when it works, is really useful.
  • Turbo buttons save a lot of wear and tear on your thumbs in games like Contra or Life Force, and it's nice that you can adjust the speed.
  • Having two plugs that allow you to switch between player 1 and 2 and the flip of a switch was a very convenient way to let players share the controller in hot-seat games.

Bad

  • The slow feature only works for player 1, and doesn't work on a lot of games. Games that work must use the start button to pause the game (which excludes games like The Legend of Zelda and Mega Man 2), and cannot have delays involved in the pause process (which excludes games like Super Mario Bros.).
  • Because the turbo buttons are adjustable, it's very difficult to get them in sync. This makes it very hard to perform actions which require the player to push both A and B at the same time.
  • The directional joystick isn't as clean as the standard controller's digital D-pad, and it makes it harder to control your player in many games.
  • The ball on the joystick screws off, and is easy to lose.

Ugly

  • Nothing.

Gallery

Games

This is a table of how the Slow feature of the NES Advantage reacts to games.

Game Works Notes
1942 No Long delay between pauses.
Battletoads Yes Annoying sound.
Bionic Commando No Uses select for pause.
Blaster Master No Opens / closes menu.
A Boy and His Blob: Trouble On Blobolonia Yes Status bar flashes.
Bubble Bobble Yes
Castlevania Yes Annoying sound.
Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers Yes Annoying sound.
Contra Yes Annoying sound.
Déjà Vu No No pause.
Double Dribble Yes Annoying sound.
Dragon Warrior No Long delay between pauses.
Duck Hunt No Doesn't pause.
DuckTales Yes Annoying sound. Status bar flashes.
Excitebike No Long delay between pauses.
Felix the Cat Yes Annoying sound. Status bar flashes.
Final Fantasy No Opens / closes menu.
Gauntlet No Opens / closes menu.
Gauntlet II Yes
The Goonies Yes Annoying sound.
The Goonies II No Opens / closes menu.
Guerilla War Yes Annoying sound.
Ice Hockey No Long delay between pauses.
Life Force Yes Annoying sound.
The Legend of Zelda No Opens / closes menu.
Mega Man No Opens / closes menu.
Mega Man II No Opens / closes menu.
Mega Man III No Opens / closes menu.
Mega Man IV No Opens / closes menu.
Mega Man V No Opens / closes menu.
Mega Man VI No Opens / closes menu.
Metroid Yes
Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!! No No pause.
Pinball Quest Yes Annoying sound.
Puss N Boots: Pero's Great Adventure Yes Annoying sound.
Rad Racer Yes Annoying sound. Status bar flashes.
Rampage No Doesn't un-pause.
River City Ransom Yes Annoying sound. Status bar flashes.
Section-Z Yes Annoying sound.
Shadowgate No Reads hint.
Spy Hunter No No pause.
Super C Yes Annoying sound.
Super Mario Bros. No Long delay between pauses.
Super Mario Bros. 2 No Opens / closes menu.
Super Mario Bros. 3 No Delay between pauses.
Tecmo Bowl No No pause.
Tecmo Super Bowl No No pause.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles No Long delay between pauses.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Arcade Game Yes Annoying sound.
Times of Lore No Opens / closes menu.
Toki Yes Annoying sound.
Ultima: Exodus No No pause.
Uninvited No No pause.
Zelda: Adventure of Link No Opens / closes menu.

Links